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Monday, October 12, 2009


Pool Riders on a big pool: skater's Heaven...

Written by Xavier Lannes

I never surfed Zuma, I never surfed Maverick and I never surfed Pipeline or the North Shore. I doubt I would ever be able to skate “Heaven” the new pool-toy from Bucky Lasek, I would be too humbled and downtrodden by it. The magnificent pool has been finished for a couple of months now and several high flyers have already tried it, including Christian Hosoi, Josh Borden, Chris Miller, Kevin Staab, Tony Hawk, Peter Hewitt, Jeff Grosso, and of course Derek Krasauskas.

But this week-end, Bucky invited even more friends to an amazing sesh and while cameras rolled on the party was going full throttles, like if there was a jet carrier hidden in the bottom of the pool ready to launch staunch missiles on 4 urethane wheels to get all spectators in shock and awe.

The story of that pool is amazing: perched on the top of the hill in Bucky’s backyard, overlooking the San Diego valley, the pool took more than one year to be built. After being in his house for already five years, Bucky suddenly realized that there was over a half acre on top of the hill that was never landscaped: a bare no man’s land with infectious dirt, languishing trees and lonesome rocks. Best of all: it was unused. It took Billabong, Vans, and Rockstar to get together and backed up Bucky’s idea of building this mega bowl and the dream came true.

The original design came up from Bucky: three bowls connected with hips. But after a while, Bucky just realized that that design wouldn't work because the hips would be too tight. So, he had to go back to the drawing board and it took another year to redesign it. He took the plans off of several vert ramps and bowls and combined them together.

California Skateparks drew it all out and put the wheels in motion. The ground work, leveling, and dealing with the city were done by Rob Astefin, one of Buckys friend. After dealing with all the permits and rain, the dig has really been coming along but It took a while to level out the spot where the bowl was going to sit due to the slope of the hill. Finally, because of the inspections, what was initially supposed to take a week or two took almost 6 months. But the result is truly amazing. The pool is 13.5 ft. deep in the arrow head section and 12.8 ft. in the round. All the hips have 45 degrees or less. That’s real mellow. The tranny is 11.6 ft. in the arrow head with two feet of vert and the round is 10.8 ft. with 2 ft. of vert. The shallow end is 8 ft. tranny that almost goes to vert. The arrow head shape came from a combination between Shanghai, which has a similar arrow head and the YMCA ramp which is an old XGames ramp that had two corners towards the ends. But the ramp wasn't bowled in. Now, take the two heads, just make it bigger and more open so you wouldn't get caught in the toilet bowl effect and you got it. The size is 10.8 ft. which is a little bit bigger than the normal round.

Golden State coping was chosen over standard pool blocks because of the neighborhood: it keeps the noise down. Furthermore, thanks to Golden State coping the rides are faster, like a vert ramp with no loosing speed.

I have no doubt that, with the construction of this monstrous pool Bucky Lasek might be setting the stage for the next evolution in skateboarding bringing the new school back to the pools where the sport once started in 76, while pushing the boundaries of vert skating to a new level never envisioned before. It’s about time: pool riding was sentenced to death in 81 and it took 28 years to resuscitate it. It seems that in the next decade, skaters will leave the flatlands to go back where skate should have never departed: vert and pool riding.

Now, the nice part of this article is the following video from Shred or Die and some lowdown skating featuring Glifberg, Chris and Zack Miller, Salba, and Bucky Lasek going stupidly high in his bowl. So just sit and be amazed:

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posted by Xavier Lannes @ Monday, October 12, 2009 




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